Routledge Handbook of the Sociology of Sport  book cover
1st Edition

Routledge Handbook of the Sociology of Sport

ISBN 9781138308527
Published July 9, 2017 by Routledge
492 Pages

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Book Description

The sociology of sport is a core discipline within the academic study of sport. It helps us to understand what sport is and why it matters. Sociological knowledge, implicit or explicit, therefore underpins scholarly enquiry into sport in every aspect. The Routledge Handbook of the Sociology of Sport is a landmark publication that brings together the most important themes, theories and issues within the sociology of sport, tracing the contours of the discipline and surveying the state-of-the-art.

Part One explores the main theories and analytical approaches that define contemporary sport sociology and introduces the most important methodological issues confronting researchers working in the social scientific study of sport. Part Two examines the connections and divisions between sociology and cognate disciplines within sport studies, including history, anthropology, economics, leisure and tourism studies, philosophy, politics and psychology. Part Three investigates how the most important social divisions within sport, and in wider society, are addressed in sport sociology, including ‘race‘, gender, class, sexuality and disability. Part Four explores a wide range of pressing contemporary issues associated with sport, including sport and the body, social problems associated with sport, sport places and settings, and the global aspects of sport.

Written by a team of leading international sport scholars, including many of the most well-known, respected and innovative thinkers working in the discipline, the Routledge Handbook of the Sociology of Sport is an essential reference for any student, researcher or professional with an interest in sport.

Table of Contents


Part 1: Major Theories and Approaches

1. Introduction to Part 1

2. Researching Sport

3. The Functionalist Perspective on Sport

4. Interpretive Approaches in the Sociology of Sport

5. Marxist and Neo-Marxist Approaches on Sport

6. Norbert Elias and the Sociology of Sport

7. Pierre Bourdieu on Sport

8. Niklas Luhmann, System Theory and Sport

9. Physical Cultural Studies on Sport

10. Poststructuralism and the Sociology of Sport

11. Post/colonial Theory and Sport

Part 2: Sociology, Social Sciences, and Interdisciplinary Studies of Sport

12. Introduction to Part 2

13. Anthropological Perspectives and the Sociology of Sport

14. Economic and Sociological Approaches to Sport

15. Geographical Approaches and the Sociology of Sport

16. History, Sociology and Critical Sport Studies

17. Leisure Studies and the Sociology of Sport

18. Philosophy, Sociology and the Critical Analysis of Sport

19. Political Science, Sociology and the Study of Sport

20. Psychology and Sociology in Sport Studies

Part 3: Social Divisions and Sport

21. Introduction to Part 3

22. Social Class and Sport

23. Gender and Sport

24. Race and Sport

25. Sexualities and Sport

26. Disability and Sport: The Case of the Paralympic Games

Part 4: Central Issues in the Sociology of Sport

27. Introduction to Part 4

28. Sport and the Body

29. Sport, Physical Activity and Health

30. Risk and Uncertainty in Sport

31. Doping in Elite Sport

32. Sport Fans and Fandoms

33. Sport and Violence

34. Sport and Social Intervention

35. Sport and the Urban

36. Sport Mega-Events

37. Sport and Environmentalism

38. Sport and Media

39. Sport and New Media

40. Sport and the Nation in the Global Age

41. The Migration of Elite Athletes

42. Sport and the Corporate World

43. Sport, International Development and Peace

44. Globalization and Sport

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Richard Giulianotti is Professor of Sociology at Loughborough University, UK, and also Professor II at Telemark University College, Norway. His main research interests are in the fields of sport, globalization, development and peace, sport mega-events, crime and deviance, cultural identities, and qualitative methods. He has headed several projects on these subjects, funded by the UK ESRC, European Commission, and Nuffield Foundation. He is author of the books Football: A Sociology of the Global Game (1999), Sport: A Critical Sociology (2005, revised 2015), Ethics, Money and Sport (with A.J. Walsh, 2007), Globalization and Football (with R. Robertson, 2009), and Hooligans e Oligarchi: L’invenzione del Calcio Globale (2015). He has guest co-edited special issues of British Journal of Sociology, Global Networks, and Urban Studies, edited a further dozen books, and published numerous articles in international journals and edited collections. His work has been translated and published in eleven languages


Selected for the Outstanding Academic Title (OAT) Award 2017 by CHOICE magazine.

‘This handbook joins an increasingly crowded market of advanced primers devoted to introducing students to the critical study of sport as social and cultural phenomenon.  As the writing and thinking in these pages demonstrates, Giulianotti has assembled a group of world-class contributors … In sum, an outstanding and exhaustive collection …It is required reading for early-career scholars seeking a survey of the theoretical foundations of the sociology of sport … Summing Up: Essential. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty.’ - J. Newman, CHOICE